Caramel brown snood: eBay eBay seller tina.g-2008
Brown cameo earrings: Handmade by me
Burgundy corduroy blazer: Reitman's
1980s Avon plastic floral cameo brooch: Shoulder to Shoulder Military Collectibles
Thin knit wheat coloured top: Old Navy
1950s navy blue pencil skirt: eBay
1940s/50s cream cotton gloves: (probably) eBay
Brown leather satchel bag: Scaramanga
Nude stockings with nude seam: eBay
Brown vintage style lace up oxfords: Payless
Lip colour: Clinique Raspberry Glace
Photography by Tony Cangiano
♥ ♥ ♥
...time weather, that is! Though we have a couple of sunny days lately, we've also been pelted with further snow and some really, really drab skies, like the ones that were out at the end of last week while Tony and I shot these photos down at the beach on Okanagan Lake here in Penticton (yet, there was still more than enough sunlight to turn me into Squinty McSqinterton again - *sigh*). Perhaps because it's so close to home, we rarely shoot on the sand proper there (we've often shot at other locations around it, such as the near the Sicamous, Rotary Park, and the gorgeous rose garden).
I'm not keen at all on how standing on sand makes my calves, which are anything but the most slender of creatures (a point which for some reason this surface just seems to highlight something fierce if I've got a dress, skirt, shorts or capri pants on), look unless I've got mile high heels on. Sometime though you have to take one for the fashion team, especially when the grass and ground around town are a soupy, semi-winter, semi-spring mess. Plus, I was in no hurry to wreck these wonderfully lovely vintage looking brown oxfords that I purchased with some of 2013's Christmas money from Payless in early January. They've fast become one of my frequently worn and highly adored pairs and fill a read void (for brown "everyday" type shoes) that I had in my footwear wardrobe.
They also happen to go extremely well, if I may say so myself, with this tremendously elegant Scaramanga satchel bag, which was very kindly sent to me for review by the awesome folks at Scaramanga. They contacted me a few months back to ask if I'd like to both receive one of their beautiful bags and also swap posts on each other's sites. I said a big yes to both and will appearing in an interview on their blog today. Very exciting!
I was given pretty much free reign of the Scaramanga satchel that I wanted receive and debated colours and sizes for hours (no joke), even bringing in Tony to get his thoughts on various shades. In the end, it came down to black and this warm, wonderfully classic shade of brown. As I didn't previously have any true satchel bags, let alone one this roomy, I knew that I wanted a versatile colour that would be easy to blend with numerous outfits in my wardrobe. Black, versatile as it is, is already quite common in my handbag collection, so ultimately I opted for brown instead and am very glad that I did, as I didn't realize until this sturdy satchel arrived just how much I needed a bag like this in my life.
The first thing that struck me in person about my new Scaramanga bag is just how well made it is. This is not thin, rinky-dink leather here in the slightest. It's thick, but still wonderfully pliable, and is partnered with secure stitching and practical, yet also pretty, nickel hardware. Being (very!) allergic to nickel myself, I do wish that Scaramanga's bags (and all handbags) were free of this metal, but thankfully the amount of hardware present is fairly minimal and I can bypass getting a bad case of contact dermatitis from it simply by wear thick long sleeves and gloves, something that I commonly do for a good chunk of the year anyhow, while using this bag.
The Scaramanga brand got its roots in 2006 when a chap named Carl Morenikeji felt the urge to bring the classic, iconic leather satchel back to the masses in the United Kingdom - and the world. I've long been a die hard fan of this style of bag - which is both beautiful and highly functional - and am very glad that he did, as it ultimately led to my first proper leather satchel appearing in my closet.
Jump ahead a few years to the present and Scaramanga has become one of the best known modern leather satchel brands, with the bulk of their inventory being created by skilled artisans in the UK and India. I sincerely mean it when I say that this is an amazing bag. It doesn't feel modern, and I say that as a very positive thing. It looks, and is, new, but it feels like a treasured family heirloom. Something your grandfather or grandmother might have handed down to you, bought back in the day from a high end leather goods shop and treasured over the decades.
I have the feeling when I use my brown leather satchel that it will be with me not just for years, but for decades, which isn’t something one encounters with a lot of budget-friendly (and in some cases, even more pricy) bags of any kind these days. Even with having to avoid the nickel hardware on it, I know that this is a bag I'm going to get a tremendous amount of use of it. It can stand up to rigors of our rambunctious dog, tote an abundance of day-to-day essentials, is easily cleaned with a damp cloth or Mr. Clean Magic Eraser (my go-to cleaning tool for many leather and faux leather goods), and has garnered numerous compliments already over the five occasions I've worn it out now. I wholeheartedly adore this timelessly stylish satchel and very much appreciate that Scaramanga sent it my way.
The precise bag that I received from Scaramanga is the 13 inch brown leather satchel, which retails for £80.00. That is a bit of a steep price, I know, especially if you're shopping from outside of the UK or elsewhere in Europe, but the quality and beauty, not to mention the scores of times you'll likely use it, quickly help that price seem like an investment, instead of (just) a splurge purchase.
Not all handbags and larger bags like this satchel are created even, but thankfully Scaramanga's are at the top of this playing field, in my opinion. I would have zero qualms buying their offerings to give as gifts or for myself down the road, if I felt like I needed further leather satchels. Scaramanga ships worldwide for refreshingly reasonable rates, so you can avail of their splendid leather offerings (which leather satchels and messenger bags, silver jewelry, home goods, journals, notebooks, albums, and canvas bags, amongst other lovely products) no matter where in the world you reside.
You know, generally speaking, while I look at hundreds, often thousands, of vintage images on an average week, and I store many of them away in my mind for sartorial inspiration, it isn't every day that I see a look and intentionally want to try and emulate it right then and there. Around the time that Scaramanga contacted me, I saw a great 1940s fashion illustration again on Pinterest and knew, thanks to the similar bag that the lady in it was sporting, that I wanted to take a styling cue from it when putting together the outfit for today's post.
While I didn't have a mustard yellow blazer (I wish!) and opted for a navy blue vintage pencil/wiggle skirt, not a brown one as here, as well as swapping a snood for the charming plaid headscarf, I still very much turned to this image for inspiration while styling this great leather satchel and am sure that it will continue to inspire me as I sport it time and time again in the months and years to come.
Okay, so winter still wants to hang around for a little longer, but maybe that isn't such a bad thing - it gives me a few more days (or weeks, as the case may be) to sport the best of the season's fabrics, like the corduroy of my blazer, knit top, and this elegant, practical, immensely lovely leather satchel bag and coordinating faux leather lace up oxfords.
All things that, I'm sure, I'll be pining for at least a little bit once the sweltering days of late spring and summer finally do grace us once again. Thankfully though, no matter the weather, my Scaramanga satchel will be along for the ride as the perfect all-season, hearty, stylish, fabulously vintage appropriate daily carry bag that can take whatever life wants to throw at it.